Mineral Rights In Eminent Domain

If your property is being acquired in a condemnation proceeding, one element commonly left out of valuation of property is the mineral rights that may be attached to the property. These mineral rights can sometimes be worth more than the surface property itself, and, in any case, deserve to be compensated if they are taken.

However, many people do not actually own the mineral rights on their property, and, even if they do, mineral rights are not always relevant to an eminent domain proceeding. This page contains some basic background information, but the best way to determine whether mineral rights are relevant in your case is with a consultation at The Florida Property Rights Law Firm, where we can evaluate your situation and help you determine what course of action to take next. Please call 407-208-2652 or email us today.

Do You Own the Mineral Rights?

Mineral rights are separable from surface property rights. As such, they are often handled and traded separately, so that many property owners do not also own the mineral rights attached to their property. It is common for the developing company or other entity that parceled the land to maintain mineral rights for the entire subdivision. Other times, mineral rights may be reserved or sold separately by government agencies.

If you do not own the mineral rights, you cannot receive compensation for them, except under some special circumstances. However, you might be able to find and contact the owner of the mineral rights to help you combat a condemnation action.

Are Mineral Rights Relevant?

Even if you own the mineral rights to your property, they are not always relevant to an eminent domain proceeding. Mineral rights are only relevant when the highest and best use of a property gains from them. Mineral rights might be made irrelevant by zoning regulations that make it so you could never legally exploit the minerals. In some cases, you might be able to overcome this limitation by demonstrating the potential value of minerals and the potential for adaptation of the property.

The next factor that determines whether mineral rights are relevant is whether there are any mineral rights of significance in the property under consideration. In other words, you would have to show probable cause that mineral rights may be of some significant value. This could be accomplished with a geologic survey of the area that might show a potential for some mineral wealth. Sometimes relevant surveys exist. Other times, you may have to hire a surveyor of your own. The mineral rights may also have some value even in the absence of known minerals of value.

To learn whether mineral rights are relevant to your eminent domain lawsuit, please schedule a consultation at The Florida Property Rights Law Firm today.